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2018 VA N D E R B I LT


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For insights into the qualities we seek in Vanderbilt Law students, visit our website at and sample the profiles of our students and graduates.

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| Dean | John Wade-Kent Syverud Professor of Law

In 2001, I visited Vanderbilt for the first time as a faculty candidate—and discovered an environment unique among American law schools. Collegial and

supportive, challenging and academically rigorous, Vanderbilt offers a community where all of the elements required to create a great law school come together in ways that surpass expectations. I joined this community in 2002 because here, great scholars and teachers thrive. As Vanderbilt’s Dean, one of my top priorities is maintaining the strong sense of community that sets Vanderbilt apart from other law schools. Experience it, and you will find compelling reasons to make Vanderbilt your law school. You’ll find talented students from across the nation and a welcoming network of alumni who live and work around the globe. You’ll find a distinguished faculty of experts who are leaders in their fields, a rigorous curriculum, and a wide array of academic, dual-degree and interdisciplinary programs, in a modern building on a beautiful campus in a vibrant city. Most importantly, you’ll find an extraordinarily collegial and collaborative school culture, the hallmark of a Vanderbilt legal education that our students have treasured for decades. You’ll discover that Vanderbilt stands apart not only for the quality of the legal training delivered by our faculty of renowned legal scholars and teachers, but also for the support you’ll receive from one of the nation’s best Career Services departments. Our academic programs go beyond providing outstanding training and connect legal theory to real-world strategies, knowledge and experiences. That approach provides immediate advantages when you interview for legal positions and begin practicing law. Finally, you’ll find yourself at home in one of America’s most livable cities. Like few other places, Vanderbilt’s Nashville setting lets you balance the rigors of study with abundant opportunities to enjoy a city with a remarkable blend of cosmopolitan sophistication and the feel of a friendly small town. I invite you to visit Vanderbilt and discover these things for yourself. Sincerely yours,

Chris Guthrie


I really appreciate Vanderbilt’s size. It’s a I also like being able to attend a school with sends its graduates all over the country. VANDERBILT LAW | 02

small school that fosters a tight network. a fantastic reputation in a mid-sized city that SUSANNA RYCHLAK

| Class of 2017 2017–18 Clerk, Judge Julia Smith Gibbons, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit 2016 –17 Editor in Chief, Vanderbilt Law Review


Educating Lawyers for the 21st Century

Lawyers lead. Prepare accordingly. When you choose Vanderbilt Law School, you join a thriving global community of professionals dedicated to the advancement of justice and society through law. Our 9,400 alumni are active in all 50 states, D.C., two U.S. territories and 39 foreign nations. Our world-class faculty is committed to training tomorrow’s leaders. And, in three short years, our students gain the experience, skills and analytic tools they need to tackle difficult problems locally, nationally and globally. Here, you’ll find engaging courses that challenge you to work harder and accomplish more than you thought

possible. Clinics, externships and other experiential learning opportunities that allow you to apply classroom training to real-world practice settings. Mentors who are among the nation’s leading legal scholars. Innovative, interdisciplinary academic programs. Accomplished colleagues from across the nation and around the world. A state-of-the-art building located on a world-class university campus in one of America’s most livable cities. All of these advantages combine to create an exceptional environment in which to prepare for careers in law, public service, business, government or other areas where the application of law and legal reasoning shape positive outcomes for individuals and society.

At Vanderbilt, I learned how to research effectively, dissect legal problems in an analytically concise way, communicate with legal professionals, and work collaboratively with others. I also learned how to work hard at Vanderbilt—really hard!


| Class of 2012 | Associate, Susman Godfrey, Seattle Jenna was a clerk for Judges Ronald M. Gould and Richard C. Tallman of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit from 2012–14.


VLS has given me the tools to solve sophisticated legal problems and communicate effectively with any audience— clients, partners, associates and others. MICHAEL MOORE | Class of 2017 Associate, Bradley Arant Boult Cummings, Nashville


Professional excellence Vanderbilt Law professors approach teaching with the same careful preparation, skill and enthusiasm they seek to foster in students embarking on professional careers. Beyond our challenging curriculum, every Vanderbilt student has ample opportunities to pursue intellectual and professional development outside the classroom. You may choose to join student organizations that focus on specific areas of law, do substantive legal work in a variety of settings for course credit or with stipend support, compete for positions on four scholarly journals, and participate in Vanderbilt’s well-organized Moot Court and Mock Trial programs and our accomplished Jessup International Moot Court team.


Academic programs organize short courses taught by judges, public officials and renowned practitioners, and sponsor reading groups, discussion groups, lectures and symposia addressing current issues and cutting-edge legal scholarship. The Career Services Office sponsors frequent talks delivered by prominent attorneys, many of whom are Vanderbilt Law graduates who frankly discuss the range of professional skills required to meet the challenges of their areas of legal practice.

Number of studentpublished scholarly journals Vanderbilt Law Review – established in 1947 Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law – established in 1965 Vanderbilt Journal of Entertainment & Technology Law – established in 1967 Environmental Law & Policy Annual Review – established in 2007 and produced in conjunction with the Environmental Law Institute in Washington, D.C.

The teaching quality at Vanderbilt Law is excellent. Professors strategically plan lessons to teach us to think critically and to develop legal analytical skills. They have high expectations and are always enthusiastic about answering questions and discussing topics further outside of class. And I’ve also learned so much from my classmates in class discussions and in meetings with the Articles Committee on Law Review. LAURA DOLBOW


| Class of 2017 | Founder’s Medal for First Honors 2017–18 Clerk, Judge Timothy Dyk, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, Washington, D.C. Laura was Senior Articles Editor for the Vanderbilt Law Review. She will serve as a judicial clerk for Judge Judith W. Rodger of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit in 2018–19.


Federal clerkships secured by members of the Class of 2017

Vanderbilt is a place where both students and faculty take ideas seriously. Each class is energized by the intellectual excitement that comes from the exchange of ideas. SUZANNA SHERRY | Herman O. Loewenstein Professor of Law Professor Sherry is a nationally renowned scholar of constitutional law. She won Vanderbilt University’s 2017 SEC Faculty Achievement Award, which recognized her outstanding teaching, research and scholarship.


During your first semester, you learn what skills that set you up for success during


law school is all about–and you learn the rest of your law school career. ANNIE MUSACCHIO CROSLOW

| Class of 2016 Associate, Debevoise & Plimpton, Washington, D.C.


Collegial culture, global outlook Law graduates must be team players in difficult circumstances, and Vanderbilt’s well-established culture promotes collaboration in a challenging learning environment. Students choose Vanderbilt for its longstanding reputation for collegiality, professionalism and relationship building, because they recognize that mutual support, teamwork and respect for others’ views are essential to professional success. In fact, our students and alumni consistently say that the strong sense of community among their colleagues here is one of the most valuable and enduring aspects of a Vanderbilt legal education. Law practice is increasingly global, and Vanderbilt prepares its graduates for a world in which few lawyers work only with the laws of a single state or nation. Even as students benefit from Vanderbilt’s broad curriculum and smallschool culture, they also engage in professional practice

ERIC SWEDA, CLASS OF 1990, is managing partner of Troutman Sanders’ Hong Kong office, where he heads the firm’s international arbitration and dispute resolution team. He credits serving as editor-in-chief of the Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law and his international law classes at Vanderbilt with “greatly facilitating” his move from the firm’s Atlanta office to Asia.

settings far beyond our campus through externships for academic credit and stipend-supported legal work experiences throughout the world. Our summer study program in Venice, student exchange program in Belgium, and International Law Practice Lab further extend students’ global outlook, as does the inclusion of foreigntrained lawyers and judges in our LL.M. program who learn about American law alongside J.D. students in an enriched learning environment.


I began looking more closely at Vanderbilt Law School because of the strength of the International Legal Studies Program. The expertise and knowledge of the faculty is incredible, and the Vanderbilt in Venice program allowed me to take more international and comparative law classes than I could during a semester. RACHEL JOHNSON

| Class of 2018 Raymonde I. Paul International Law Scholar 2017 Summer Associate, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer


Annual number of foreign-trained lawyers and judges in our LL.M. program who learn about American law alongside J.D. students

VANDERBILT IN VENICE Each summer, about 40 students study international law topics by attending the Vanderbilt in Venice program, directed by Professor Michael Newton.

Vanderbilt is a community of students and scholars, all working to understand the law. Our daily interactions with each other make us all better at what we do. CHRISTOPHER SERKIN | Associate Dean for Academic Affairs Dean Serkin received Hall-Hartman Awards for Outstanding Teaching in 2013 and 2014, both for his first-year Property class and his upper-level class in Local Government Law.


I expected my classmates to be very intelligent and involved, but almost everyone I’ve met at Vanderbilt also has a high social IQ. Not only can people converse intelligently about the law, but they also put you at ease. They’re well-rounded and affable. KYLE LYONS-BURKE | Class of 2017 2017-18 Clerk, Judge R. Lanier Anderson III, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit Shown here arguing in the final round of the 2016 Bass Berry & Sims Moot Court Competition, Kyle and his teammate, Andrew Marino ’17, were finalists in the Moot Court Competition, which began with 68 teams. Kyle was Articles Editor of the Vanderbilt Law Review in 2016-17.

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foreign nations

New graduates consistently choose top-tier employment in a variety of locations throughout the nation and abroad. Collectively, the last five graduating classes reported employment in 41 states; Washington, D.C.; the U.S. Virgin Islands; five foreign nations; and four military branches. Vanderbilt Law’s total network of over 9,400 alumni covers 50 states; Washington, D.C.; two U.S. Territories and 41 foreign nations.



Our professors are not only brilliant in their respective fields, but also truly committed to teaching. Legal concepts are challenging, but it is clear that our professors are constantly thinking of new ways to convey the information and engage us. Professors are also always available during office hours. RACHEL JOHNSON

| Class of 2018 Raymonde I. Paul International Law Scholar 2017 Summer Associate, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer Rachel took four international law courses at Vanderbilt in Venice and then spent the remainder of summer 2016 working at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in The Hague, Netherlands.


Vanderbilt Law faculty are members of the American Law Institute, an independent organization of legal scholars, practitioners and judges that promotes the clarification and simplification of U.S. common law.




Learn from leading legal scholars. Vanderbilt’s faculty ranked ninth among U.S. law schools in a study, “Scholarly Impact of Law Faculties in 2015: Applying Leiter Scores to Rank the Top Third,” conducted by a team led by University of St. Thomas professor Gregory Sisk. The ranking is based on citations of faculty work from 2010–14.

Learning to think like a lawyer remains the bedrock of a sound legal education. Vanderbilt’s faculty is known for teaching students the rigorous analytic and problem-solving skills used by legal professionals. Consistently ranked among the most productive in the nation, Vanderbilt Law professors are known nationally and internationally for their work in such areas as corporate and business law, law and economics, international law, environmental and property law, energy law, intellectual property law, criminal law, complex litigation, constitutional law, law and neuroscience, social justice, health law and policy, and bioethics.

As a result, Vanderbilt students learn about the law from some of the nation’s leading legal scholars. Faculty expertise translates into engaging coursework that takes students to the cutting edge of current legal scholarship. More than that, Vanderbilt faculty are committed teachers and mentors, and our school’s small size allows students to enjoy substantial access to faculty throughout their time in law school. The availability of faculty to work with and come to know students as individuals both in and out of class adds greatly to the value of a Vanderbilt legal education.

MORGAN RICKS’ 2016 book, The Money Problem: Rethinking Financial Regulation (Chicago University Press) grew out of his experience as a senior policy adviser and financial restructuring expert at the U.S. Treasury Department following the global financial meltdown of 2008. He proposes a way to simplify financial regulation and make the financial system more stable.


Professor Ganesh Sitaraman’s new book, The Crisis of the Middle Class: Why Economic Inequality Threatens Our Democracy, argues that the growing gulf between affluent Americans and everyone else poses a significant threat to our basic structure of government. Unless we address the issue of economic equality, he contends, the American middle class will continue to shrink and, ultimately, the U.S. will cease to exist as a democracy. The book was released to immediate acclaim in March 2017. His first book, The Counterinsurgent’s Constitution: Law in the Age of Small Wars, won the 2013 Palmer Civil Liberties Prize.


Vanderbilt students are creative, thoughtful and engaged in the classroom. As a faculty, we care deeply about teaching, and we challenge our students to improve and grow. GANESH SITARAMAN

| Professor of Law


Interdisciplinary and highly innovative Vanderbilt’s commitment to programs that integrate rigorous training in legal theory with contemporary law practice extends to our extensive array of interdisciplinary and dual-degree programs. These programs also reflect Vanderbilt University’s strong commitment to initiatives that encourage faculty and students from Vanderbilt’s 10 schools to work together on issues that demand an interdisciplinary approach. The law school’s location on the university’s campus, near top-ranked schools of medicine, business, engineering and education, makes Vanderbilt an especially attractive choice for students who want to pursue a dual degree.


Vanderbilt University faculty who have dual appointments at the law school

INTERDISCIPLINARY PROGRAMS The MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Law and Neuroscience, a grant-funded program supported by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, is headquartered at Vanderbilt University and directed by Owen Jones, New York Alumni Chancellor’s Chair in Law. The Climate Change Research Network, directed by law professor Michael Vandenbergh, integrates faculty and students from six Vanderbilt schools. DUAL-DEGREE PROGRAMS The PH.D. IN LAW AND ECONOMICS allows students to enter with a J.D. from any ABA-approved law school or to earn both a J.D. and a Ph.D. concurrently in a fully integrated curriculum. The J.D./M.S. IN FINANCE, which allows students to earn both degrees in three academic years, is available in conjunction with the Owen Graduate School of Management.

Vanderbilt offers its well-established J.D./M.B.A. program in conjunction with the Owen Graduate School of Management, which adjoins the law school. Medical students can expand their professional horizons through Vanderbilt’s J.D./M.D. Three faculty members— bioethics expert Ellen Wright Clayton, health policy expert James Blumstein and criminal law expert Christopher Slobogin— have dual appointments at Vanderbilt’s law and medical schools. Earn a J.D./M.DIV. or J.D./M.T.S. in conjunction with the Vanderbilt Divinity School. Earn a J.D./M.P.P. in conjunction with Vanderbilt’s Peabody College of Education. Tailor your own program to earn a J.D./ M.A. or J.D./PH.D. in conjunction with the Vanderbilt Graduate School.

Inventions have become increasingly to advances in science and technology. research university offering expertise in VANDERBILT LAW | 18

Number of Vanderbilt Law faculty with dual appointments at other Vanderbilt schools

My law professors were great at teaching the fundamentals of contracts, civil procedure and property, but I found myself more curious about the topics their research addressed. JENNIFER BENNETT SHINALL Assistant Professor of Law J.D./Ph.D. in Law and Economics 2012 Jennifer was a clerk for Judge John Tinder of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in 2012–13. She joined Vanderbilt’s Law and Economics faculty in 2014 after serving as a postdoctoral research fellow.

complex, and patent law has to respond I was eager to join the faculty at a both science and law. SEAN B. SEYMORE

| Professor of Law | Professor of Chemistry


EDWARD CHENG’S search for innovative alternatives that would promote more discussion among scholars of legal evidence law led him to launch a new podcast, Excited Utterance, in fall 2016. The podcast’s name alludes to a well-known exception to the “hearsay rule” in evidence law, and the format is simple: In each podcast, Professor Cheng interviews another legal scholar about his or her current research. He now has more than 1,200 subscribers, and the 28 podcasts he produced in the 2016–17 academic year addressed such topics as the implications of body cameras worn by police officers, problems with the quality of evidence produced by forensic laboratories, and the use of scientific evidence in court. Professor Cheng hopes the podcast will make scholarship focusing on evidence law more accessible to a wider audience. “A lot of research gets lost in journals because people have to invest the time in finding and reading lengthy articles,” he said. “Our listeners can become exposed to a wide variety of evidence research in 25 minutes a week, perhaps while they’re commuting or doing household chores. It’s a new format through which the ‘evidence community’ can connect.”


Vanderbilt was a natural intellectual fit for me because it has a really amazing concentration of scholars who do interdisciplinary research. EDWARD K. CHENG

| FedEx Research Professor of Law


A forward-thinking law school In the past four years, Vanderbilt has launched two new programs–the J.D./M.S. in Finance, which recognizes the increasing demand for corporate and transactional lawyers with advanced training in finance, and the Program on Law and Innovation, which is designed to equip Vanderbilt Law graduates to successfully navigate and influence rapid changes in law, the legal industry

and legal technologies throughout their careers. These programs extend Vanderbilt’s broad array of dual-degree and academic programs that allow students to focus on indemand legal specialties, including corporate, intellectual property, regulatory, environmental, criminal and public interest law, or develop litigation and transactional skills.

Professor Amanda Rose, who studies securities regulation, earned her Master’s in Finance at Vanderbilt “to raise the sophistication level of my teaching and research,” she said. As a lawyer with Gibson Dunn & Crutcher in San Francisco, Professor Rose defended clients facing security fraud actions before joining Vanderbilt’s law faculty. “I had spent my entire career practicing, studying and teaching about securities regulation and picked up a lot of basic financial knowledge, but I’d never had formal training in finance,” she said. Since earning her M.S.F., Professor Rose has developed a new class, Advanced Securities Regulation, for which she is writing a textbook.

The financial services industry is highly regulated, and lawyers and financial professionals need to understand these regulations and how they’re evolving. AMANDA ROSE


| Professor of Law

Vanderbilt’s Program on Law and Innovation is designed to equip our students to successfully navigate and influence the ways in which law and legal practice are changing. J.B. RUHL

| David Daniels Allen Distinguished Chair of Law Professor Ruhl began his blog about the future of legal practice, Law2050, in 2013—the same year he debuted his Law 2050 class, which focuses on the ways in which delivery of legal services are changing due to technology, client demand, innovation and entrepreneurship. He established and directs the Program on Law & Innovation, launched in 2015.


An outstanding classroom experience


Vanderbilt Law School has 3 1L sections of approximately 65 students.

The classroom experience is a testament to Vanderbilt Law School. You really need to be engaged, and you’re much more intellectually stimulated in the classroom. Early on, when we’re all terrified, everybody is rooting for students who get called on in class. You build meaningful, supportive relationships with your classmates and professors here. Professors invest a lot of time and effort in their teaching, and it shows. After one semester, you see the world differently. STANLEY ONYEADOR

| J.D./M.B.A. Class of 2017 Associate, Cravath Swaine & Moore, New York 2016–17 Executive Editor, Vanderbilt Law Review


INGRID BRUNK WUERTH (pictured here), who directs Vanderbilt’s International Legal Studies Program, was one of four professors honored with 2017 Hall-Hartman Teaching Awards. Professor Wuerth was recognized for her first-year Civil Procedure class for the fourth year in a row, and for her upper-level Foreign Affairs class. Tracey George, who directs the Branstetter Litigation and Dispute Resolution Program, and Rebecca Allensworth, who is affiliated with the Law and Business Program, were both recognized by their sections for their first-year Contracts classes, and Edward Cheng, who is affiliated with the Criminal Law program, was recognized for the fifth year in a row for his upper-level Evidence course. VANDERBILT LAW | 25

The course materials Professors Tracey George (right) and Suzanna Sherry developed for The Life of the Law, a oneweek course all entering students take, became the basis for their book, What Every Law Student Really Needs to Know. TRACEY E. GEORGE

| Charles B. Cox III and Lucy D. Cox Family Chair in Law and Liberty | Professor of Political Science Director, Branstetter Litigation and Dispute Resolution Program


I love the classes at Vanderbilt, and I like how in depth you get in class discussions. The readings are tough because there are all these tangential issues you have to come up to speed on. For example, you’re reading contracts, but you’re also learning about the poultry business. You’re like a detective—you have to understand how all the moving parts work. BEN RAKER

| Class of 2017 2017–18 Clerk, Judge James K. Bredar, U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland Ben, who was Notes Development Editor for the Vanderbilt Law Review in 2016–17, won two environmental law writing competitions in spring 2017: the Environmental Law Institute’s Henry L. Diamond Constitutional Law Prize and the Tennessee Bar Association Environmental Law Section’s Hastings Memorial Award. Ben’s Diamond Prize-winning paper, “Decentralization and Deference and Why That Matters to Renewable Energy,” published in the Environmental Law Reporter, addresses how courts should handle conflicts between state and federal regulations regarding renewable energy. Ben wrote the paper for his Renewable Energy seminar with Professor Jim Rossi. He wrote his Hastings Award-winning paper, which addresses a law that limits the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation’s ability to impose post-construction stormwater requirements on construction projects, specifically for the TBA’s writing competition.


Connect theory to practice. Vanderbilt is a leader in designing innovative academic, clinic and externship opportunities that connect outstanding theoretical training to twenty-first century law practice. First-year students begin their studies during orientation with The Life of the Law, an intensive oneweek course developed by Vanderbilt Law faculty in which students learn core concepts relevant to legal education, including the structure of the American government and legal system, cross-cutting legal doctrines, and interdisciplinary approaches to legal analysis. The class introduces essential skills for learning the law, including analytical reasoning and proven techniques for “reading like an expert” and briefing cases, as well as the Socratic method of teaching.


Number of Vanderbilt Law students who served externships for course credit in summer 2017

The Life of the Law prepares you for the rigorous theoretical training you will receive during the first year of law school, which provides the intellectual foundation upon which you will build a well-rounded legal education specifically tailored to your intellectual interests and professional goals. Each entering J.D. class is divided into three sections for core courses, including Torts, Contracts, Criminal Law, Constitutional Law, Civil Procedure, Property and The Regulatory State, and into groups of about 20 students for Legal Writing. Students choose a spring semester elective to complete the first-year curriculum. During your second and third years, you choose from a rich array of elective courses, seminars, clinics and externships. Upper-level study is enhanced by opportunities to serve as a research assistant; join the editorial staff of one of four scholarly journals; work with clients through clinics, externships and pro bono projects; and engage in the intellectual life of one of the world’s great universities.

Students in Vanderbilt’s International Law Practice Lab wrote and submitted an amicus brief to the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights in a human rights case that challenged Ethiopia’s counter-terrorism statute, which had been used to silence those critical of the government. Prepared under the supervision of Professor Michael Newton, who teaches the Practice Lab, and British attorney Oliver Windridge, the brief challenged the arrests, detentions, ill-treatment and convictions of 29 Ethiopian citizens in apparent retaliation for their participation or public support of peaceful protests of government interference in the exercise of their Muslim faith. The brief’s purpose was to inform the commission’s deliberations on the question of whether Ethiopia’s counterterror law violates best practices and international standards for criminalizing acts of terrorism.


Preconceptions and ideology play far too great a role in environmental law and policy making. I encourage students to question underlying assumptions in ways that will help us draft better laws and make better policies.

MICHAEL VANDENBERGH | David Daniels Allen Distinguished Professor of Law Professor Vandenbergh directs Vanderbilt University’s interdisciplinary Climate Change Research Network, through which faculty from several Vanderbilt schools work together to influence environmental policy, and co-directs the law school’s Energy, Environment and Land Use Program.



Number of students who received stipends to support their pro bono legal work in judicial chambers, government agencies, federal and state attorneys’ offices, public defenders’ offices and public interest organizations in summer 2017

I want to make a little bit of trouble where it’s needed. ABBY MOSKOWITZ | Class of 2017 | Garrison Social Justice Scholar Clerk, Judge James L. Dennis, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. Abby’s desire to pursue a career in public interest law was confirmed during her first year at Vanderbilt. “I realized how inequitable access to private legal services is,” she said. “I want to help people who won’t otherwise have access to legal representation. That’s a gap that needs to be filled, and I want to do that work.” In 2015, she became the first recipient of a new scholarship specifically designed to help students prepare for social justice and public interest careers during their second and third years of law school, which also provides summer stipends to allow them to work pro bono for public interest and advocacy organizations. Abby, shown here at right, worked for the ACLU in Nashville during summer 2015 and for the National Women’s Center in Washington, D.C., during summer 2016. She was the first Garrison Social Justice Scholar. VANDERBILT LAW | 30

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VLS ranked 14th in Above the Law’s “Top 50 Law Schools 2016”

Launch a career in public interest law Marian Mikhail and Carly Myers, both Class of 2017, are Vanderbilt’s George Barrett Social Justice Fellows in 2017–18. The law school’s George Barrett Social Justice Fund awards up to two fellowships each year to members of the graduating class seeking to launch careers in public interest law. Applicants propose year-long projects at legal nonprofits, and the fellowship pays their full salaries and benefits at the sponsoring organization.

MARIAN (left) is developing a new program at the Bronx Defenders in New York to help low-income clients facing criminal charges for non-vehicular offenses to keep their driver’s licenses. As a summer intern with Bronx Defenders, she discovered that “Losing a driver’s license affects everything—economic livelihood, child- and parental care, and professional and personal responsibilities. So some people choose a criminal conviction over a license revocation to prevent their lives from being unraveled.”

CARLY is working at the Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund in Berkeley, California. Her program focuses on helping low-income people with disabilities navigate legal barriers to accessing mobility aids, such as wheelchairs. The idea for her fellowship came from her work on behalf of several clients with disabilities, including a four-year-old girl who needed a walker, as a legal intern at DREDF. “Long delays are common with both public and private health insurance plans,” Myers said. “This is particularly devastating for children, who often have already outgrown the equipment by the time they receive it.”


The first year of law school introduces of American law. Regulation is such an students should be exposed to regulation legal education.


students to the current landscape important feature of that landscape that and how it is created early in their KEVIN STACK | Professor of Law; Director of Graduate Studies, Ph.D. Program in Law & Economics Professor Stack, together with noted legal scholars Lisa Bressman and Edward Rubin, collaborated on a casebook specifically designed for The Regulatory State, a first-year course they worked together to develop.


Integrated design Vanderbilt’s comprehensive academic approach treats scholarship, professional development and service as integral components of legal education, affording you the flexibility to seek broad-based exposure to many areas of law or focus on one or two chosen areas of particular interest. With our faculty of experts in every area of law, you’ll find ample opportunities to explore the breadth of the profession and determine which areas you find most compelling.

Your exposure to the myriad ways in which law influences professional, political, social and cultural life is enhanced by academic programs that integrate courses, clinics, externships and fellowships, and extracurricular activities. In each program, you’ll find courses that give you a thorough grounding in current theory alongside courses and clinics that address policy issues as well as practical lawyering skills. You’ll also discover that many first-year and upper-level courses are taught by professors whose recent scholarship not only addresses topics at the frontiers of their fields of law, but also influences policy at a national level.

Law and business are inextricably linked; lawyers work in teams with executive managers, board members and investment bankers. We foster that relationship with our Law and Business Program. RANDALL S. THOMAS | John Beasley II Professor of Law and Business | Director, Law and Business Program Articles authored or co-authored by Professor Thomas have frequently been selected as among the “Top 10 Corporate and Securities Articles” by the Corporate Practice Commentator.

Number of graduates who typically receive the Law & Business Certificate each year, about 30% of each class VANDERBILT LAW | 34

We need a new international copyright system that actually works. Right now, copyright is like a civil war! DANIEL GERVAIS | Milton R. Underwood Professor of Law Director, Vanderbilt Intellectual Property Program Faculty Co-director, LL.M. Program

In his new book, (Re)stucturing Copyright: A Comprehensive Path to International Copyright Reform (Elgar Publishing, 2017), Professor Gervais suggests replacing the current copyright system with something much simpler. He believes the current system—which pays a songwriter $25 for a million and a half streams of a song and keeps readers from accessing books they want to read —should be rethought to promote access to creative works and fair payment for use of copyrighted materials. “There’s another way to do copyright, which is to limit the right to say ‘no’ when it comes to getting permission to use copyrighted content, but increase the cases where some form of compensation is paid,” he said.


High ROI

The deals are huge, there are lots of moving parts, and you have to parse them out to members of a team. Your duties on one deal may be different from your duties on another. I’ve learned a lot about delegation and how to break down a project into manageable parts by working on team projects at Owen. WILL BELTON | J.D./M.S.F. Class of 2016 Associate, Baker Donelson, Nashville

By his 2L year, Will knew he wanted to focus on transactional practice. Vanderbilt’s J.D./ Master’s in Finance, an innovative dual-degree program offered by the law school in conjunction with Vanderbilt’s Owen Graduate School of Management, allowed Will to gain valuable expertise in finance and accounting without extending his studies beyond three academic years. After graduation, Will joined Baker Donelson, where he had worked in the corporate and securities group over both summers during law school. He believes his Finance coursework at Owen will inform his law practice, enabling him to do a better job of structuring complex financial transactions for his firm’s clients.


The J.D./M.S.F. allows our students to get the same technical training in finance and accounting their clients receive, and they study with MBA students—their future clients. RANDALL THOMAS

| Director, Law & Business Program John S. Beasley II Chair in Law and Business Professor of Management


Law practice is increasingly SPECIALIZED, and Vanderbilt offers several well-established UPPER-LEVEL TRACKS that allow students to gain IN-DEPTH EXPOSURE to fast-evolving TECHNICAL AND COMPLEX AREAS OF LAW. Law and Business. Earn a certificate in Law and Business

through an intensive upper-level curriculum, including transactional seminars, that allows students to build expertise in business law, corporate management, finance and accounting. The faculty includes experts in corporate, commercial, bankruptcy, antitrust and tax law as well as arbitration and economics. Vanderbilt offers a 3-year J.D./ M.S.F. and a 4-year J.D./M.B.A. Intellectual Property. Prepare to enter copyright or patent

law practice, both domestic and international, through courses taught by international intellectual property expert Daniel Gervais, patent law expert Sean Seymore, music copyright scholar Joseph Fishman and noted practitioners, as well as an intellectual property clinic. Energy, Environment and Land Use. Prepare for regulatory

practice through a broad array of courses taught by leading scholars. The program also sponsors externships and fosters research opportunities through the Vanderbilt Institute for Energy and Environment and the Climate Change Research Network, an interdisciplinary team of faculty and graduate and professional students representing several Vanderbilt schools and academic departments. Criminal Justice. Focus on criminal theory and practice,

criminal procedure, juvenile justice, international criminal law, mental health law and other areas through an array of upperlevel courses and clinics taught by experts in fields such as law and neuroscience, human rights and juvenile justice. International Legal Studies. Prepare for careers in a global environment by combining substantive classroom exposure to cutting-edge topics in international law with practical

experience in their application through the International Law Practice Lab and externships. Core faculty have expertise in international corporations and transactions, intellectual property, human rights, constitutional and criminal law. Litigation and Dispute Resolution. Prepare to step immediately into sophisticated litigation practice through an advanced curriculum that offers both a practical and conceptual understanding of the different methods that our justice system employs to resolve disputes. Faculty include leading scholars, practitioners and judges. Social Justice. Explore the role of law in creating, perpetuating and eradicating hierarchies of power and privilege in our society through a curriculum that includes seminars, clinics, externships and directed research projects along with ample extracurricular opportunities for pro bono legal work. Law and Government. Prepare for careers in public law and

policy through a comprehensive curriculum taught by faculty with nationally recognized expertise in constitutional and public law. Law and Innovation. Anticipate the opportunities created by changes in law and legal practice. Launched in 2015 to train the next generation of lawyers to succeed in tomorrow’s legal environment, this program offers curriculum and activities focused on four related themes: the legal industry, legal technologies, legal innovation and entrepreneurship, and access to legal services.

Vanderbilt has not only lived up to my expectations of law school, but has greatly exceeded any law school experience I could have ever imagined. The relationships I’ve developed with my colleagues and professors will last a lifetime. Every single one of my professors has taken a personal interest in my progress and development as a young attorney. LORA CHOWDHURY | Class of 2017 2017–18 Clerk, Judge David Hittner, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas 2016–17 Managing Editor, Vanderbilt Law Review VANDERBILT LAW | 38

In 1865, the United States was a beacon of liberty and equality in the world. Fast forward 35 years, and America is a Jim Crow nation. Understanding how some of the same people who fought for one vision of America became the architects of a seemingly antithetical vision is crucial to understanding the divisions that define modern America. DANIEL J. SHARFSTEIN

| Tarkington Chair of Teaching Excellence

Professor Sharfstein’s new book, Thunder in the Mountains: Chief Joseph, Oliver Otis Howard and the Nez Perce War (W.W. Norton, 2017) examines the history of federal policy toward Native American lands and people through the clash between a Nez Perce leader and an army general in the Northwest in 1877. Professor Sharfstein uses the conflict between Nez Perce bands and the federal government to illuminate the troubled, intertwined history of race relations and property rights in the United States, showing how America went from emancipating slaves after the Civil War to harsh discrimination against all non-whites within a few short years. His previous book, The Invisible Line: Three American Families and the Journey from Black to White (Penguin Press, 2011). won three major prizes.


Gain experience guided by experts. Vanderbilt offers ample opportunities for students to gain practical experience through clinics, practicums, supervised summer and semester externships for course credit, an international practice lab in which students work on such high-level projects as treaties and statutes, and corporate practice courses taught by experienced practitioners focusing on business documents, transactions and bankruptcy. Our clinics introduce students to a variety of real-world practice settings from municipal hearings to federal appellate courts to international tribunals, allowing them to do substantive legal work under the close supervision of a law professor. In clinics, skills courses and externships, you’ll learn how the legal system works and how its participants interact, and also gain an understanding of issues of ethics and professional responsibility by working closely with experienced practitioners. The law school also offers summer stipends to help defray the living expenses of students who volunteer with public service organizations, nonprofits or NGOs anywhere in the world.


Number of short courses taught by judges and highprofile lawyers in 2017–18

Develop skills in context Appellate Litigation Clinic. Represent clients in federal and state courts of appeals, both as counsel and amicus curiae. Civil Practice Clinic. Represent individuals with Social Security disability appeals, or children and parents who need special education services in public schools. Community Enterprise Clinic. Represent small businesses and nonprofit organizations in transactional matters such as entity formation, tax, contracts, employment, intellectual property and risk management. Criminal Practice Clinic. Gain experience in pre-trial, trial and post-conviction legal work by representing adults charged with criminal offenses and children charged with criminal offenses and delinquency. Immigration Law Clinic. Represent vulnerable low-income immigrants before immigration agencies, the Department of Homeland Security, and federal courts in humanitarian Cases. Intellectual Property and the Arts Clinic. Represent individuals, businesses, groups and associations in intellectual property matters, internet issues, and business and contractual matters.

Theoretical classes teach students to think like lawyers, but law exists out in the real world. Our clinics allow students to learn in this context—and to apply their new skills to a real problem and learn substance and procedure in context. SUSAN KAY

| Class of 1979 | Associate Dean for Clinical Affairs Dean Kay also administers Vanderbilt’s summer stipend and externship programs. During summer 2017, 94 Vanderbilt students received stipends to support their work with courts, federal and state agencies, attorneys general and district attorneys, public defenders, and public interest and advocacy organizations, and 47 served in externships for course credit.


International Law Practice Lab. Work on treaties, research comparative criminal statutes, and write amicus briefs for international human rights advocacy organizations. Patent Litigation Practicum. Draft pleadings and summary judgments; prepare written discovery, claim charts, briefs and expert reports; take and defend depositions; and prepare to try a patent infringement lawsuit.

The work my students have done is reflected in treaties, statutes, decisions and negotiating histories across the globe. MICHAEL A. NEWTON

| Professor of the Practice of Law Students in Professor Newton’s International Law Practice Lab have completed legal work supporting the U.S. Departments of State, Justice and Defense, the International Bar Association, the International Criminal Court, the Iraqi High Tribunal, and a number of United Nations and global human rights organizations.

VANDERBILT’S TWO ABA MOOT COURT TEAMS ADVANCED TO THE QUARTERFINALS AND THE OCTOFINALS IN THE ABA’S 2016–17 NATIONAL APPELLATE ADVOCACY COMPETITION. Competitors participate in a hypothetical appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court by writing a legal brief and then arguing the case before the mock court. NEIL GREENWELL ’17, ANDREW MARINO ’17 and KATHERINE MARTIN ’17, shown here, were quarterfinalists. Both teams were coached by PRATIK GHOSH ’17. “The regional competition started with over 30 teams and was narrowed down to four final teams—including both Vanderbilt teams!” Ghosh said.

Transactional Skills Courses Negotiation and Drafting of Key Corporate Documents. Learn to read and draft basic documents encountered in corporate practice. Negotiated Public Mergers & Acquisitions. Conduct a step-by-step analysis of an actual public-company merger transaction. Representing the Public Company. Gain a working knowledge of initial public offerings, operational and governance challenges, growth through mergers and acquisitions, and exiting the public sector.


Serve while you learn. And vice versa. Opportunities for public service begin during orientation, when you may choose to take the Pro Bono Pledge, a commitment to perform at least 75 hours of pro bono legal work and community service during law school. Students are also encouraged to pursue summer work in public service with the support of stipends funded by the law school, the student Legal Aid Society, alumni endowments and academic programs. Each year, students receive funding to support pro bono work in judicial chambers, in the offices of federal and district attorneys and public defenders, and with government agencies and nonprofit advocacy organizations across the nation and around the world. In recent years, Vanderbilt students have worked in the U.S. Departments of Energy, Justice, State, Health and Human Services, Homeland Security, Housing and Urban Development, and Veterans Affairs and for the

Internal Revenue Service, the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Food and Drug Administration, the National Labor Relations Board and other agencies. They have also worked with the international criminal tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda, the United Nations, the World Intellectual Property Organization, and other international government and advocacy organizations. Vanderbilt alumni who serve as federal judges, on the staffs of the U.S. and district attorneys’ and federal and public defenders’ offices, and with the Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and other advocacy organizations teach at Vanderbilt and involve students in pro bono and public interest work. Vanderbilt’s active student organizations, including the Legal Aid Society, also organize service projects throughout the year.

Cases that gain notoriety are not the bread and butter of what I do every day as a federal trial judge. But there are no unimportant cases, and I devote my energies and focus to each case that comes before me. JUDGE ALETA TRAUGER Class of 1976 U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee

75 3 Hours of public service required to fulfill the Pro Bono Pledge

2017 Vanderbilt Law graduates working as paid, full-time social justice fellows

HANNAH KEITH, Class of 2018, led 10 VLS students on the 2017 Pro Bono Spring Break trip to Biloxi, Mississippi, where students worked at the Mississippi Center for Justice. Law Students for Social Justice, a student organization, organizes the Pro Bono Spring Break program, and the George Barrett Social Justice Program and the Assistant Dean for Public Interest’s office provides funding for transportation and lodging. VANDERBILT LAW | 42

We had 1Ls working on motions to suppress evidence. People had an amazing experience. DARRIUS WOODS | Class of 2017 2017–19 Equal Justice Works Fellow

DARRIUS WOODS, Class of 2017, is developing a new program at the Atlanta Legal Aid Society as an Equal Justice Works Fellow. Darrius studied law specifically to focus on legal barriers to affordable housing, a need he recognized during a two-year stint as a kindergarten teacher in an Atlanta elementary school with Teach for America before law school. He made a practice of visiting the homes of his students who exhibited behavioral problems to understand the challenges they faced. “I got to this kid’s apartment, and every building in his complex was burned down but his,” he recalled. “When I brought him home, he asked if he could stay with me.” He is using his two-year fellowship, funded by Home Depot and the international law firm Eversheds Sutherland, to develop a program aimed at helping people evicted from their homes due to unscrupulous financing arrangements. In 2015, Darrius organized the law school’s first Pro Bono Spring Break program, leading a group of students to New Orleans, where students worked with the Orleans Public Defenders, the New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center and Southeast Louisiana Legal Services. VANDERBILT LAW | 43

You’re constantly reacting and learning very quickly. These are skills every startup founder needs.


Students and recent graduates secured judicial clerkships in 2016–17.


ASCHKAN ABDUL-MALEK | JD/MBA Class of 2006 Founder, AlumHealth, Kabul, Afghanistan While living in Kabul as a researcher for the World Bank, Aschkan discovered that many Afghans were forced to leave their country for medical care. He formed AlumHealth, a telemedicine company that has since expanded to Lagos, Nigeria, to give doctors and hospitals reliable ways to connect with foreign specialists—which allows more patients to be treated at home. Future plans includes branches in Kenya, Indonesia, Iraq and Sudan.

Skills that benefit many career paths At Vanderbilt, you will gain the intellectual tools to adapt to a fast-changing professional landscape. As you advance in your studies, you will not only acquire an entirely new way of thinking about issues and problems, but also learn to apply these skills in professional settings.

Laura Deck ’10 joined the U.S. State Department’s Office of the Legal Adviser in Washington, D.C., in July 2015, having served as an intern there for the fall semester of 2011. She joined the State Department’s legal staff with two years of experience at Proskauer Rose in Boston.

In each of our academic programs, you’ll find courses that develop your analytical, problem-solving, negotiation and dispute resolution, advocacy, speaking and writing skills. In fact, the skills you gain from a legal education will benefit you in any professional setting and on many career paths.

As executive vice president and deputy chairman of Sotheby’s based in Hong Kong, DARYL WICKSTROM ‘86 plays a pivotal role in developing the company’s burgeoning Asia market.

I love that there are lots of career paths you can take with a law degree, and Vanderbilt’s Career Services department is one of its greatest assets. They were incredibly helpful. Anywhere I wanted to go, they were ready and willing to help. STEVE BERNEMAN

| Class of 2010 Steve sold Overdog, a Nashville company he co-founded that connects gamers, to New York based Odd Networks in 2016.


A balanced approach While free time during law school can seem scarce, most students find it important to balance the demands of study by joining one or more organizations for professional advancement, personal development, community service and professional networking. Our Academic Life office provides year-round support to individual students and to student organizations. Students also receive the support of a dedicated information technology staff, a committed legal writing faculty and expert legal librarians. Non-professional student organizations devoted to everything from soccer to religious fellowship to knitting are encouraged and supported. Vanderbilt University also provides a wide array of services to meet your academic and personal needs. You will spend much of your time in the law school building, and Vanderbilt’s modern facility offers a wealth of natural light and comfortable study nooks, along with a wireless network, attractive classrooms, a café and student lounges.

Vanderbilt attracts people whose priorities mass of people who served in the military or did something else that broadened their That community fosters close friendships MATTHEW DOWNER

| Class of 2014 Associate, Kirkland & Ellis, Washington, D.C. Matt won the 2014 Gellhorn-Sargentich Writing Competition, sponsored by the American Bar Association’s Section of Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice. Matt served in the U.S. Army for six years after earning his undergraduate degree at Harvard. He was executive editor of the Vanderbilt Law Review in 2013–14. He was a clerk for Judge Amul Thapar of U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky in 2014–15 and for Judge Raymond Kethledge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in 2015–16. He and his wife celebrated the birth of their second child during Matt’s 2L spring semester.



Number of student organizations

The atmosphere at Vanderbilt encourages students to push themselves academically. It’s competitive in that each student strives to do the best that he or she can, but our desire to do well does not prevent us from supporting one another. CLAIRE ZEIGELER

| Class of 2017 2015 Vanderbilt in Venice and intern, International Criminal Court, The Hague, Netherlands

extend beyond the classroom—it has a critical or Teach for America, started businesses perspective between college and law school. and helps us maintain balanced lives.


A leading law school at a leading university Founded in 1874 in conjunction with Vanderbilt

University, Vanderbilt Law School has trained distinguished and influential lawyers, policymakers and public servants for more than 140 years. Building on this tradition of excellence, the law school has established itself as a leader in designing programs that connect outstanding theoretical training to real-world experiences relevant to twenty-first century law practice. Our law school isn’t the only national leader on campus. Vanderbilt also houses prestigious graduate schools of medicine,


education, business, engineering, divinity, nursing and music, among others. As an integral part of top-ranked Vanderbilt University, the law school offers the cultural diversity and advantages of life at a leading institution of higher education. It also affords students access to highly regarded interdisciplinary and dual-degree programs, including a J.D./Ph.D. in Law and Economics, a J.D./M.B.A., a three-year J.D./M.S. in Finance, and other dual-degree programs in medicine, public policy and divinity, among other areas.

Vanderbilt J.D. Class of 2019 Profile

22%11 204 AGE applicants

students (5%) hold advanced degrees




median age 23


undergraduate colleges represented

3.50 / 25% 3.70 / median 3.85 / 75%

states, Washington, D.C., and international

162 / 25% (85th percentile among test-takers) 167 / median (94th percentile among test-takers) 168 / 75% (96th percentile among test-takers) VANDERBILT LAW | 49

A world of opportunity Law practice is now a global endeavor. Approximately 400 Vanderbilt J.D. graduates now live and work in 41 nations outside the U.S., and that number is growing each year. That network is extended by Vanderbilt’s LL.M. graduates, who come here to study the American legal system after earning a law degree in their home country. And in the U.S., more than 9,400 Vanderbilt Law graduates practice in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Alumni are a vital force in the life of the law school. More than a decade ago, their contributions allowed Vanderbilt to complete a $24 million expansion and renovation project that almost doubled the size of our building, which remains one of the most technologically current, attractive and comfortable facilities in the nation. The financial support alumni provide allows the law school to maintain a

key advantage: the small size of our student body. In recent years, alumni have endowed the George Barrett Social Justice Program, funded Vanderbilt’s well-regarded Law and Business Program, created new scholarships and postgraduate fellowships, and endowed faculty positions and public interest summer stipends. But Vanderbilt alumni provide much more than financial support. They recruit our students, help students network with prospective employers, teach courses as members of our adjunct faculty, and take an active role in decisions about the law school’s academic programs, curriculum and governance. They also interview J.D. applicants during the admission process and mentor and hire our students and graduates.

As the U.S. State Department’s Special Envoy for Guantanamo Closure from 2013–16, Charlie Trumbull ’06 negotiated the placement of detainees. He joined the State Department in 2007 after clerking for Judge M. Blane Michael of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and for Judge Phillippe Kirsch of the International Criminal Court. Charlie has also served as a legal adviser to the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad.

403 Number of Vanderbilt Law alumni who live and work outside the U.S.


Having a solid grounding in the common law of contracts and the Universal Commercial Code is really important. In disputes, our contracts are arbitrated under UNCITRAL rules, which means they’re based on an internationally understood commercial logic. Fortunately, this logic tends to be very similar to the UCC and the common law of contracts.

WILLIAM F. HAGERTY IV ’84 (BA’81) is the U.S. Ambassador to Japan. He had previously served on the cabinet of Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam as Commissioner of Economic Development, with responsibility for trade, jobs and economic growth for the state of Tennessee.

SAMAR ALI ’06 helped establish Hogan & Lovell’s office in Dubai before serving as a 2010 White House Fellow, after which she worked with U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and then managed Tennessee’s global relations under Gov. Bill Haslam. She is now managing director of Lodestone Advisor Group, which specializes in internationalization, and practices at Bass Berry & Sims.

CHRISTOPHER RUGGERIO | Class of 2003 Staff Attorney, World Intellectual Property Organization, Geneva, Switzerland

Vanderbilt Law Alumni as of June 2017

I N T E R N AT I O N A L , U . S . T E R R I TO R I E S AND U.S. ARMED FORCES Washington 106

China 166 Japan 65 Republic of Korea 28 Germany 21 England 18 India 12 Hong Kong 10 Canada 9 Belgium 7 Mexico 7 Brazil 6 France 5 Switzerland 5 Thailand 4 U.S. Virgin Islands 4 Australia 3 Italy 3 Turkey 3 United Arab Emirates 3 Chile 2 Netherlands 2 Norway 2 Puerto Rico 2

Israel­ Venezuela Afghanistan Austria Colombia Iceland Kazakhstan Luxembourg Morocco Nicaragua Peru Poland Qatar Russia Saudi Arabia Scotland Singapore Spain Sweden Ukraine Armed Forces-Europe Armed Forces-Pacific Armed Forces-Military Police

2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 5 3 1

Oregon 40

Montana 10 Idaho 15 Wyoming 9

Nevada 33 California 499

Utah 24

Arizona 87

South Dakota 4 Nebraska 8

Colorado 116

New Mexico 24

New Hampshire 25 Vermont 18

North Dakota Minnesota 2 51

Kansas 31 Oklahoma 32

Texas 552

Maine 22

Massachusetts 125 Rhode Island 22 Connecticut 106 Pennsylvania New Jersey 152 Iowa 178 Delaware 22 17 Ohio Illinois Indiana 202 Maryland 220 West 294 99 Washington, DC 253 Virginia Virginia 29 Missouri Kentucky 317 127 209 North Carolina Tennessee 280 2,189 Arkansas South Carolina 92 79 Georgia Mississippi 659 85 Alabama 304 Louisiana 64 Wisconsin 29

Michigan 101

New York 503

Florida 531

Alaska 6

Hawaii 15


National reach. National presence. National impact. Vanderbilt Law School attracts highly qualified students and faculty from throughout the U.S. and abroad because it allows them to have a national impact. Vanderbilt Law graduates are represented in the judiciary and in almost every branch of the federal government, as U.S. Attorneys and federal defenders, in Congress and state legislatures and government agencies, as managing partners of major international law firms, as corporate officers and counsel, on law faculties, in the Judge Advocate General Corps, heading influential advocacy groups, and in law offices in all 50 states and Washington, D.C.

Vanderbilt owes its national stature to the outstanding career accomplishments of both its alumni and its faculty. Its reputation for producing skilled attorneys who are team players has been gained over decades as members of graduating classes have gone to legal jobs throughout the nation. Vanderbilt’s extensive alumni network and the global professional networks of its faculty combine to help Vanderbilt students secure coveted summer externships, fellowships and employment with federal and state judicial chambers and agencies, government attorneys’ offices, law firms and advocacy programs.

Vanderbilt alumni are founding or managing partners at a number of leading national firms. Ben C. Adams, Class of 1981 Chairman & CEO, Baker Donelson Bearman Caldwell & Berkowitz Matthew R. Burnstein, Class of 1996 Chairman, Waller Lansden Dortch & Davis Michael Daneker, Class of 1992 Co-Manager, Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer William A. Fenwick, Class of 1967 Founding Partner (emeritus), Fenwick and West Beau Grenier, Class of 1982 Chairman, Bradley Arant Boult Cummings Edward L. Hardin, Class of 1968 Founding Partner, Rogers & Hardin

Richard Hays, Class of 1986 Managing Partner, Alston & Bird Robert Hays, Class of 1983 Chairman, King & Spalding Stephen C. Mahon, Class of 1989 Global Managing Partner, Squire Sanders Darren Robbins, Class of 1993 Founding Partner, Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd Mark Ruehlmann, Class of 1997 Global Chair, Squire Sanders Patton Boggs Kenneth L. Stewart, Class of 1979 Global Chair, Norton Rose Fulbright Guilford F. Thornton Jr., Class of 1990 Managing Partner, Adams and Reese

I came to law school because I wanted a career where I could make a bigger impact with my work—and for me, that meant government service. HUD’s Honor Program is a great opportunity because of the focus on helping you hone your legal skills early in your career. AUSTIN HOLLAND

| Class of 2017 Legal Honors Program, Office of Litigation, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Washington, D.C. Austin was selected for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Legal Honors Program for entrylevel attorneys. The prestigious 14-month program, through which fewer than 20 entry-level attorneys join HUD’s legal staff each year, provides training and mentoring to entry-level attorneys interested in careers in government service. The HUD Honors Program is the department’s only hiring program for entry-level attorneys, and it is the HUD Office of General Counsel’s succession training program. Attorneys in the program are assigned mentors and given the opportunity to rotate through some or all of the eight offices within the HUD’s Office of General Counsel. Austin was mentored by Mary Barrett Brewer ’86, who has served on HUD’s legal staff since 1991. At Vanderbilt, Austin was executive editor of the Environmental Law and Policy Annual Review and an authorities editor with the Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law. He co-founded a new student organization, Law Students for Innocence and Prisoner Rights, which enables students to respond to the mass incarceration crisis by sponsoring educational events, review claims of false imprisonment, building relationships with Nashville organizations devoted to prisoners’ rights, and engaging with Tennessee’s prison population.


I wanted to make sure I would have the opportunity to go back to the Northeast, and I found plenty of opportunities in Boston. I would encourage anyone not to worry about going back home to work with a Vanderbilt Law degree. AMIT TANTRI | Class of 2013 Senior Associate, WilmerHale, Boston Amit landed a coveted internship at the U.S. Department of Justice, where he worked in the Antitrust Division in summer 2011. He spent summer 2012 at WilmerHale and then joined the firm after his graduation.


Percent of graduating Vanderbilt Law students have taken employment out of state during the five-year period from 2011 to 2015 across 42 states, D.C., and internationally.


Number of colleges represented by the 204 members of the Class of 2019

Vanderbilt Law alumni worldwide


Cameron Norris, Class of 2014, is serving as a law clerk to Justice Clarence Thomas of the U.S. Supreme Court, shown here during his visit to Vanderbilt to deliver the 2014 Sims Lecture, for the 2017-18 term. Cam had joined Consovoy McCarthy Park in Arlington, Virginia, after serving as a law clerk for Judge William H. Pryor of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit in 2015–16, and for Judge Karen LeCraft Henderson of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit in 2014–15. Cam also earned his undergraduate degree at Vanderbilt, where he triple-majored in mathematics, philosophy and political science. During college, he was a back-toback American Debate Association National Champion, and he coached Vanderbilt’s varsity debate team during law school. A Dean’s Scholar at Vanderbilt, he was Senior Notes Editor of the Vanderbilt Law Review during his 3L year. His article, “A Safe Harbor for Harmless Remunerations under the Anti-Kickback Statute: Reviving Hanlester Network,” won the National Law Review’s Winter 2014 Student Legal Writing Contest and was published in the journal.



Where do you go from here? With nearly 80 percent of each graduating class taking employment out of state, Vanderbilt graduates enjoy national geographic mobility, which is supported by the school’s global alumni network and longstanding relationships with legal employers coast to coast.

For detailed information about recent graduates’ employment, please visit the Career Services section of our website.


Average number of states in which new Vanderbilt Law graduates have taken employment each year, 2012–2016


Success in Clerkship Placements Judicial clerkships are among the most coveted and valuable employment opportunities available to graduating law students. Because judicial clerks gain inside knowledge of how parties pursue actual cases and how judges resolve legal issues, obtaining a clerkship accelerates a new lawyer’s career. The process for obtaining clerkships is extremely competitive nationally, and Vanderbilt’s Judicial Clerkship Program provides support throughout the hiring process to help students secure clerkships at all levels of the judicial system. The results speak for themselves; based on ABA data, Vanderbilt consistently ranks among the top dozen law schools based on the percentage of graduates securing federal clerkships.

VLS Class

Total Graduates

% Federal Clerks

Rank Among U.S. Law Schools





















J.D. Employment Destinations—Classes of 2012–2016 MOST POPULAR D E S T I N AT I O N S , CLASSES 2012–2016 Washington 5 Montana 2

Oregon 2

Minnesota 3

Idaho 1

Nevada 9

Utah 2

California 44

New Hampshire 2 Michigan 4

Arizona 4

Connecticut 2

Pennsylvania New Jersey 6 19 Maryland 7 Indiana Ohio 23 Delaware 6 8 Illinois West Washington, DC 76 38 Virginia Virginia 1 Missouri 9 Kentucky 12 9 North Carolina 21 Tennessee 194 Arkansas South 5 Carolina 7 Mississippi Georgia 2 56 Alabama International: 10 23 China (3) Dubai (2) Louisiana England (1) 9 Germany (2) Republic of Korea (1) U.S. Virgin Islands (1) Florida

Iowa 3

Nebraska 11 Colorado 13

New York 114

Massachusetts 13

Kansas 2 Oklahoma 3

Texas 68 Alaska 1


Tennessee New York Washington, D.C. Texas Georgia California Florida Illinois

22% 13% 9% 8% 6% 5% 5% 4%

The remaining 28% took employment across another 33 states and internationally.

U.S. Military JAG: 12


Class: Tennessee New York Washington, DC Texas Georgia California Florida Illinois Alabama Ohio North Carolina Pennsylvania Colorado Massachusetts Kentucky Nebraska Louisiana Missouri Nevada Virginia Indiana Maryland

2012 40 26 14 10 16 11 6 7 5 3 2 7 2 2 3 - 1 - 2 1 3 1

2013 44 24 18 12 8 15 9 9 4 4 6 4 5 3 4 3 2 1 1 4 - 1

2014 44 15 18 14 13 4 11 8 7 5 4 2 - 3 1 2 1 - 2 - 2 2

2015 38 21 10 14 12 9 6 9 3 4 1 4 3 2 2 4 3 1 3 3 1 1

2016 Total 28 194 28 114 16 76 18 68 7 56 5 44 8 40 5 38 4 23 7 23 8 21 2 19 3 13 3 13 2 12 2 11 2 9 7 9 1 9 1 9 2 8 2 7

South Carolina Delaware New Jersey Arkansas Washington Arizona Michigan Iowa Minnesota Oklahoma Connecticut Kansas Mississippi Montana New Hampshire Oregon Utah Alaska Idaho

1 2 1 2 2 - - - 1 - 2 1 - 1 - 2 - - 1

- - 3 - 1 - - - 1 - - - - 1 - - - - -

2 - 1 3 2 1 2 - 1 - - - - - 2 - - 1 -

3 1 1 - - - 2 1 - 3 - 1 1 - - - 1 - -

1 3 - - - 3 - 2 - - - - 1 - - - 1 - -

7 6 6 5 5 4 4 3 3 3 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 1 1

I N T E R N AT I O N A L / U . S . M I L I TA R Y W O R L D W I D E / U . S . T E R R I TO R I E S G R A D U AT E S AT A G L A N C E

2012 Dubai (2) U.S. Army JAG U.S. Navy JAG

2013 2014 2015 Germany (2) China China (2) China U.S. Army JAG (2) England Republic of Korea U.S. Air Force JAG (2) U.S. Army JAG

2016 U.S. Air Force JAG U.S. Army JAG (2) U.S. Marine Corps JAG U.S. Navy JAG U.S. Virgin Islands VANDERBILT LAW | 57

Start your search from a strong position. One of the most important questions prospective law students ask when choosing a law school is whether their degree will serve them well in pursuing a career after they graduate. It’s a smart question. Law school requires a significant investment of time and money, and it’s important to evaluate law schools based on the quality of the education they offer. But there’s another extremely important consideration: the quality of assistance you will receive as you explore your career options. Our program is designed to provide you with the resources and support you need to achieve your career goals. Beginning in the first year, you will meet individually — and often — with a career counselor dedicated to your success. You will learn how to develop your resumé,

emphasize your strengths, and identify opportunities well suited to your aptitudes and desires. You will also have an opportunity to participate in a mock interview conducted by a practicing attorney. Through our comprehensive program of coaching and counseling, you will learn how to think about your job search strategically, pursue summer jobs that will enhance your resumé, and make good longterm career decisions based on your personal situation. Vanderbilt hosts a large On-Campus Interview session each fall for second-year students and another session each spring for first-year students. Employers from private firms, public interest organizations, and government departments and agencies value the talent and balance of Vanderbilt Law students, and they come to campus in high numbers.

Wherever we travel, employers tell us how highly they regard Vanderbilt graduates. They’re well-educated ­ lawyers who are also good people. ELIZABETH WORKMAN

I chose Vanderbilt because it has a really strong reputation for job placement, which was one of my primary concerns. ALEX ELLMAN

| Class of 2015 Associate, Lindquist & Vennum, Sioux Falls, South Dakota A former patrolman in the Sioux Falls, South Dakota, police department, Alex said that “being exposed to how the criminal justice system works really gave me a hunger for law school.” He returned to his hometown to join Lindquist & Vennum after his graduation.


| Assistant Dean for Career Services

J.D. Class of 2016



In percentage of 2016 law graduates employed in fulltime, long-term jobs that require bar passage (86.3%, based on ABA data)



In the nation for percentage of 2016 graduates employed as full-time, longterm federal judicial clerks (9.9%, based on ABA data)



In National Law Journal ranking based on percentage of 2016 graduates who took jobs at the nation’s largest 100 firms


Careers start here. As a top professional school, Vanderbilt offers a broad range of academic programs, externships, fellowships and other opportunities to help students identify areas of career interest and gain practical experience. Even more crucially, students gain networking skills and connections through academic program activities, short courses, pro bono legal work and meetings with established professionals who visit the law school to teach and lecture. The aim of Vanderbilt’s Career Services program is to help students identify and achieve their personal career goals. In addition to the personalized career counseling, job fairs and guidance with resumes and cover letters provided by Career Services staff, Vanderbilt students

After working at Goldman Sachs, Larry CraneMoscowitz ’16 initially planned to focus on corporate transactions in law school. But his first-year classes and summer work on enforcement actions at the Securities and Exchange Commission sparked his interest in litigation. “Now I’m excited about doing corporate litigation,” he said. Larry earned the Law and Business Certificate and chose litigation-focused classes through the Branstetter Litigation and Dispute Resolution Program. He has joined White & Case in New York as an associate. VANDERBILT LAW | 60

have access to many other resources. Our comprehensive Judicial Clerkship Program is directed by an experienced faculty member who works with all students interested in securing a clerkship as their first employment after graduation. Several academic programs offer fellowships and externships that allow students to gain substantive experience and make professional connections. Professors hire students as research assistants, allowing them to hone crucial writing skills and gain a valuable understanding of the mechanics of legal scholarship. Faculty also direct summer and semester externships that allow students to do meaningful legal work throughout the U.S. and abroad while receiving course credit.

My work and travel experiences after college reinforced my desire to go to law school and practice international law. I started looking for schools with good international programs, and when I visited Vanderbilt, I talked with Professor Michael Newton about human rights law and the internship opportunities the International Legal Studies Program offers students. I was impressed that professors at Vanderbilt were accessible and interested in working with students to achieve their career goals. SAMANTHA SERGENT

| Class of 2019 Helen Strong Curry International Law Scholar Sam was the first recipient of a new endowed scholarship to be awarded each year to a first-year student planning to focus on international law. She attended the Vanderbilt in Venice Summer Study program and then worked in the International Humanitarian Division of Global Rights Compliance in The Hague, Netherlands in summer 2017.

Vanderbilt does a wonderful job of training you in the various areas of substantive law while also training you how to think like a lawyer. But you also need to take advantage of each and every opportunity to develop practical skills and learn about the business of law.



Class of 1977 Managing Partner, Bryan Cave, Kansas City, Missouri Brandt was one of 14 Vanderbilt Law alumni who visited campus during the 2016–17 academic year to deliver talks on succeeding in job interviews and as a summer associate.

Students served in international externships during summer 2017.

Vanderbilt is recognized by a number of entities that examine career prospects for graduates of U.S. law schools in different ways: 7th (score 4.12 out of 5) in 2014 American Lawyer survey asking mid-level associates at private firms to rate their law schools on how well they prepared students for practice 7th, “Best Schools for Public Service,” PreLaw Magazine, Winter 2016 10th, Visualizing Law School Federal Judicial Clerkship Placement, 2014–16, “Excess of Democracy” blog, May 15, 2017 11th, 2017 Above the Law Top 50 Law Schools, limited to national schools “with quality employment prospects both outside of their particular region and/or for graduates who don’t graduate at the top of the class”

13th, Law schools that sent the highest percentage of 2016 graduates to the nation’s 100 largest law firms, National Law Journal 15th (tie), Law schools that saw the most alumni promoted to partner (in the 250 largest lawfirms) in 2015, National Law Journal 16th, “Does Law School Still Make Economic Sense? An Empirical Analysis of ‘Big’ Law Firm Partnership Prospects and the Relationship to Law School Attended,” by Edward Adams and Samuel Engel in 63 Buffalo Law Review 609 (2015)

Below: After attending Vanderbilt in Venice, Meg Fowler ’18 spent he second half of her summer working in the Peace Palace in The Hague for the International Bar AssociationInternational Criminal Court Project. Meg spent summer 2017 at DLA Piper in New York.


Number of students who received stipends to support externships in summer 2017

BIANCA DIBELLA ’17 and KATHERINE MARTIN ’17 won the 2016 Bass Berry & Sims Moot Court Competition, which began with 68 two-student teams. They argued the competition’s final round before a panel of these federal appellate judges, shown here: Judge Robert Bacharach of the Tenth Circuit, Judge D. Brooks Smith of the Third Circuit and Judge Julia Smith Gibbons of the Sixth Circuit. VANDERBILT LAW | 61

Cool city. Hot prospects. They still call it “Music City,” but Nashville has earned a few other distinctions, too. It’s perennially on the list of America’s friendliest cities. It has been named the nation’s No. 1 smartest place to live.

incredible live music, from honkytonks downtown to the famous Bluebird Café, a world-class symphony, bluegrass legends at The Station Inn, club shows of every persuasion, or whoever’s playing tonight at the Ryman.

With more than 200 health care companies, it has been called the industry’s “Silicon Valley.” It’s an insurance capital. A publishing capital. A financial capital. And a dynamic state capital.

Beyond Nashville’s famous hot chicken, there are so many must-try restaurants — representing a broad array of genres, innovations and corners of the world — that the Wall Street Journal calls Nashville “a culinary powerhouse.”

Meanwhile, it’s a vibrant, cosmopolitan place that blends a growing international flavor (more than 80 languages are spoken here) with traditional Southern hospitality and the laid-back feel of the West Coast.

Savor four distinct seasons in Nashville’s beautiful parks and on hundreds of miles of trails and greenways. Take in an NFL game. Or NHL hockey —the Nashville Predators played for the Stanley Cup in 2017. Or minor-league baseball. Or big-time college sports just a stroll across the campus.

All of that helps make Nashville a great place to gain your legal education. In Nashville, you always have a banquet of tempting options. Take your pick of buzzing nightspots and


Sure, you can be bored here. But you’ll have to work very, very hard at it.


People in the Nashville MSA

Nashville has an easygoing hipness that comes from the perfect mix of culture and counterculture. And it’s the perfect size—big enough to have a robust legal culture apart from the law school, but small enough to allow Vanderbilt students to influence that culture through clinics and volunteer work. As someone who grew up out West and went to school back East, I feel funny saying this, but Nashville feels like home. REBECCA ALLENSWORTH Associate Professor of Law



Number of schools that comprise Vanderbilt University

12,500 Number of students in all Vanderbilt schools


Number of J.D. and LL.M. students at Vanderbilt Law

I loved my undergraduate experience at Vanderbilt and that affected my decision to become a ‘Triple-Dore.’ STANLEY ONYEADOR

| J.D./M.B.A. Class of 2017 | B.A. Economics 2011 Associate, Cravath Swaine & Moore


A vibrant university community Founded in 1873 with a million-dollar endowment from Commodore Cornelius Vanderbilt, the university that bears his name now comprises 10 colleges and schools, including one of the nation’s top medical schools. Vanderbilt draws its 12,500 students from all 50 states and from dozens of foreign countries around the globe. Approximately 10 percent of Vanderbilt students are international. There’s always something interesting to do or see here—whether it’s Southeastern Conference football, basketball or baseball games (and a host of other sports); the Peformances at Vanderbilt series, which brings in top artists; movies at the on-campus Sarratt Cinema or plays in the university theater; free concerts at the Blair School of Music; or lectures by world-renowned scholars and leaders at the law school or elsewhere on campus. Law students can unwind at the new Vanderbilt Recreation and Wellness Center, which offers seven acres of outdoor space, including tennis courts and soccer fields, and 130,000 square feet of indoor facilities, including a swimming pool, fitness training facilities, racquetball courts, and classes in weight-training, rock climbing, dance and yoga, among other options. The intramural program includes more than 40 sports, and law students regularly form teams to participate. They also enjoy the camping, rock-climbing, spelunking and kayaking trips sponsored by the Outdoor Recreation Center.

Vanderbilt students enjoy watching their teams compete in the Southeastern Conference, the premier league of college athletics, where the Commodores more than hold their own against some of the nation’s toughest competition. This past season, the Commodore football team earned a bowl bid; the men’s basketball team won a spot in the

NCAA Tournament; and both the women’s tennis team (which reached the Final Four) and baseball team reinforced their reputations as perennial powerhouses.

Vanderbilt University is comprised of 10 schools, all located on the school’s Nashville campus. In addition to Vanderbilt Law School, the University includes:

Blair School of Music Owen Graduate School of Management Peabody College of Education and Human Development Vanderbilt College of Arts and Science Vanderbilt Divinity School Vanderbilt School of Engineering Vanderbilt School of Medicine Vanderbilt School of Nursing Vanderbilt University Graduate School

Vanderbilt Chancellor Nick Zeppos (far right), a member of the law faculty, hosted a roundtable discussion, “The Future of the Nation’s Highest Court,” in spring 2017 after the nomination of Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch. The discussion featured (l to r) author Jon Meacham, a distinguished visiting professor at Vanderbilt University; former Attorney General Alberto Gonzalas; and National Public Radio legal correspondent Nina Totenberg. VANDERBILT LAW | 65

WE’D LIKE TO MEET YOU. We’d like to know you better as a prospective student — and for you to learn more about Vanderbilt. That’s why we strongly encourage admission interviews for all applicants— and why more than 850 VLS alumni conduct in-person interviews in 46 states, D.C., and 12 foreign locations. VLS admissions officers also interview applicants at dozens of scheduled events on university campuses and in major cities coast to coast as well as in Nashville.

Another great way to discover whether Vanderbilt is the right school for you is to visit us. We invite you to contact the Admissions Office at 615-322-6452 or via email at to arrange a visit that may include a tour of our building, observing a first-year class, and a meeting or interview with an admissions officer. We believe that you will find, as our graduates past and present have found, that a visit to Vanderbilt can change your future.

Schedule an Admission Interview by December 1. Click on Prospective Students at When I came to the Admitted Students Program, I knew this was where I wanted to be. The other incoming students were extremely intelligent and driven, but also social and easygoing. WILL MARKS

I visited Vanderbilt on my own and then attended an Admitted Students Program. I was able to speak with people in the Admissions Office, sit in on a class, and observe on my own the way the students interacted. At the Admitted Students weekend, I stayed overnight with two 1Ls who were wonderful hosts.

| Class of 2014 Founder’s Medal for First Honors Associate, Williams & Connolly Will clerked for Judge Jeffrey Sutton of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in 2014–15 and then joined Williams & Connolly in Washington, D.C., as an associate.


| Class of 2017 Associate, Honigman Miller Schwartz & Cohn, Detroit


4,380 Number of applicants to the J.D. Class of 2019


Number of VLS alumni who conduct in-person admission interviews across 46 states and 12 foreign locations

READY TO APPLY? To apply to Vanderbilt Law School’s J.D. program, you must hold (or expect to hold) a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university.


WE ARE PLEASED that you are considering Vanderbilt Law School, and we look forward to working with you throughout the application process. You are welcome to contact the Admissions Office at 615-322-6452 or with any questions or concerns.

We look forward to hearing from you.

I M P O R TA N T DAT E S September 1–April 1

Applications submitted

December 1

Deadline for requesting admission interviews

January 10

Deadline for submitting Law Scholars Merit Award applications

February 15

Priority deadline for need-based scholarships


The Admission Process J.D. PROGRAM You may submit a J.D. application between September 1 and April 1. We make admission decisions on a rolling basis. Apply electronically on our website or through the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC).

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS If you completed a bachelor’s degree at an institution outside the United States (including its territories) and/or Canada, in addition to providing the materials listed above, you must also:

We can consider your application when we have received all of the following:

1) Register with the LSAC J.D. Credential Assembly Service, and 2) Take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) if the language of instruction at the foreign institution conferring your bachelor’s degree is not English. Please request that Educational Testing Service (ETS) send your TOEFL score directly to LSAC for inclusion with your Credential Assembly Service report, using code 0058.

• Your completed application form • Your LSAC Credential Assembly Service (CAS) report • Two letters of recommendation • Your personal statement • A $70 non-refundable application fee The application fee must be paid online using a credit card. ADMISSION INTERVIEWS In-person admission interviews are strongly encouraged for all applicants and may be completed with VLS alumni across the nation or abroad, with VLS admissions officers at scheduled events coast to coast, or on the VLS campus in Nashville. Request an interview by December 1 at the Prospective Students website: SELECTION PROCESS We evaluate each application thoroughly, reflecting our experience that the quality of the educational environment at Vanderbilt Law School benefits from considering a range of information far broader than your GPA and LSAT score. We make decisions on individual applications as quickly as possible, although the time required varies from case to case. A rolling selection process allows for extending the time frame of consideration where appropriate, ensuring that each application receives the individual attention it deserves and allowing us to make careful comparisons of applications completed at different times. The rolling process also means that applicants who take the December or February LSAT are not disadvantaged.

J.D. TRANSFER ADMISSION Law students who have completed one year of study in a J.D. program at an ABA-approved law school may apply for transfer admission to Vanderbilt. Transfer applications may be initiated starting on February 15. Early Action applications must be completed by April 1; Regular Decision applications must be completed by July 1. To apply as a transfer student, you must: Complete the electronic J.D. transfer application form through LSAC. A link is provided on our website. Provide a personal statement that addresses the reasons you would like to complete your J.D. at Vanderbilt or indicates your need to be located in Nashville. Provide two letters of recommendation, one of which must be from a faculty member who taught you at your current law school. Provide an official transcript showing grades for all firstyear courses, your rank in class at the end of the first year, and a letter of good standing from your current law school. Register with the LSAC Credential Assembly Service (CAS). Pay a $70 non-refundable application fee. VISITING STUDENTS J.D. students at other ABA-approved law schools may apply for visiting student status by submitting the same materials required for transfer applicants, minus a report from the LSAC Credential Assembly Service (CAS). Please provide a transcript from your law school showing grades for all academic work you have completed. You must contact the Admission Office for application forms.


Cost of Attendance | Financial Assistance Vanderbilt’s 2017–18 tuition is $54,526. More than 90 percent of Vanderbilt J.D. students receive merit- or needbased scholarships in varying amounts, with a median award of $20,000. Scholarship funds are applied directly to tuition charges, which reduces the tuition amount a scholarship recipient must pay. For example, a student with a scholarship award of $20,000 would need to pay $34,526 net tuition charges for the 2017–18 academic year. Most students pay their net tuition charges by using a combination of savings, earnings during law school, and Federal Direct student loans. The maximum loan amount a student may borrow to pay tuition equals the student’s net tuition charges. For example, a student receiving a scholarship of $20,000 could borrow up to $34,526 for tuition expenses in 2017–18; a student receiving no scholarship could borrow up to $54,526; and a student with a full-tuition scholarship could borrow $0 (zero dollars) for tuition. LAW SCHOOL MERIT SCHOLARSHIPS All admitted J.D. applicants are automatically considered for merit scholarships provided by the law school. These scholarships are awarded in varying amounts. LAW SCHOLARS MERIT AWARDS Each year, Vanderbilt provides several merit awards valued at more than full tuition to admitted applicants through a competitive selection process. To be considered, applicants must complete the Application for Law Scholars Merit Awards. We recommend that you submit this form with your application for admission, but you may submit it separately after you have applied for admission. In either case, the deadline for submitting Law Scholars applications is January 10. You’ll find more information about Law Scholars Awards on the following page. NEED-BASED SCHOLARSHIPS Some scholarships are awarded on the basis of demonstrated financial need or a combination of need and merit. For consideration, you must complete both the CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE and the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). International students who are not eligible to submit the FAFSA may still complete the CSS PROFILE to be considered for need-based scholarship assistance. February 15 is the priority deadline for consideration for need-based scholarships, and we recommend all forms be submitted by this date. Submitting the FAFSA and CSS PROFILE forms by the priority deadline increases the possibility of receiving a need-based scholarship. Forms submitted after the priority deadline will be considered to the extent that funds remain available.


When you complete the FAFSA, list Vanderbilt University’s Title IV Code, 003535. You may submit an electronic FAFSA at or obtain a paper FAFSA form through a financial aid office at a college or university. The FAFSA should be completed as soon as possible after January 1. In completing the CSS PROFILE, list Vanderbilt Law School code 0035301. The CSS PROFILE Form can be completed at online at The College Board website. Parental information is required for applicants ages 25 and under. CODE NUMBERS Vanderbilt University’s Title IV code for FAFSA form: 003535 Vanderbilt Law School’s CSS PROFILE code: 5130

LIVING EXPENSES Most students fund their living expenses through a combination of savings, earnings during law school, and Federal Direct student loans. As a Federal Direct Loan provider, Vanderbilt University makes the following estimates to set the maximum loan amount allowed, but each student’s actual expenses will depend on individual circumstances and decisions related to spending. Although a student may borrow any amount up to the maximum allowed for living expenses (currently $26,375), many students find that they can live comfortably while spending and borrowing less. ESTIMATED LIVING EXPENSES 2017–18

Books and supplies $ 1,842 Housing 11,160 Meals 4,248 Personal/miscellaneous 5,436 (includes average ACA health insurance $276/month)

Transportation 2,070 Loan fees* 1,162 VU Activity/Recreation Center Fee 457 * Average fees incurred by similarly classified borrowers during the previous year.

EDUCATIONAL LOANS Most students take out educational loans to finance some of the cost of attending law school. Admitted applicants who submit a FAFSA to Vanderbilt are notified of Federal Direct loans for which they qualify. The Federal Direct Loan program, which is funded by the U.S. Department of Education, offers loan repayment plans designed to meet the needs of most borrowers. Some repayment plans are based on your income, and some borrowers may qualify for loan forgiveness under the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program. The Direct Loan Program allows you to choose your repayment plan and to switch your plan if your needs change. For more information, visit

Law Scholars Merit Awards While all admitted applicants are automatically considered for Law School Merit Scholarships, consideration for the following merit awards requires submission of the Application for Law Scholars Merit Awards by January 10. The selection committee reviews admitted candidates’ Law Scholar applications along with their applications for admission. All admitted applicants who have submitted Law Scholar applications by January 10 will be considered for all available Law Scholar Awards. Recipients are normally notified in February. The following Law Scholar Merit Awards include fulltuition scholarships plus a $5,000 annual stipend, making each currently valued at more than $175,000 over three years. Scholarships and stipends are renewed annually for recipients in good standing at the law school. THE JOHN W. WADE SCHOLARSHIP Considered the highest honor provided to incoming students, the John W. Wade Scholarship is awarded to selected candidates who possess superior academic records and personal qualities that reflect potential for outstanding contributions to the legal profession. The selection committee seeks well-balanced individuals whose intellectual capacity, relationships with others and endeavors reflect former Dean John Wade’s commitment to scholarship, service and the legal profession. The scholarship includes full tuition plus a $5,000 annual stipend for each of the three years of law study. THE PATRICK WILSON SCHOLARS’ SCHOLARSHIP This full-tuition scholarship, sponsored by the law school’s Patrick Wilson Scholars, is awarded to selected incoming law students who demonstrate superior academic performance and strong potential for professional and personal leadership. The award includes a $5,000 annual stipend for each of the three years of law study in addition to full tuition. THE JOHN S. BEASLEY II HONOR SCHOLARSHIP The John S. Beasley II Honor Scholarship is awarded to selected incoming law students with the personal qualities, promise and potential to be a leader at the law school and in the legal profession. The scholarship includes full tuition plus a $5,000 annual stipend for each of the three years of law study.

In addition to these awards, Law Scholar applicants are also considered for: THE ELLIOTT CHEATHAM SCHOLARSHIP The Elliott Cheatham Scholarship is awarded each year to a member of the incoming law class who demonstrates the combined qualities of scholarship and leadership that Professor Cheatham possessed. The Cheatham award of $5,000 is added to all amounts of merit or need-based scholarship assistance awarded by the law school. Cheatham scholars are selected by the law school’s selection committee and the Cheatham Scholarship Trustees.

Questions? You’ll find more information about our scholarship programs on our website at You may also contact the Admissions Office at 615-322-6452 or

Considering Public Interest Law?

Vanderbilt Offers Loan Repayment Assistance. Public interest law is challenging, rewarding and — unfortunately — low-paying. Because most law graduates face the need to repay student loans, if you choose to practice law in a public interest setting, Vanderbilt Law School offers a Loan Repayment Assistance Program that assists graduates with their annual loan debt after graduation. The amount of repayment assistance for which you are eligible is based on your salary.


J.D. Application Instructions Applicants to the J.D. program must hold (or expect to hold) a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university. Apply online using the LSAC electronic application form.

A link is available on the VLS website in the Apply Now area. In addition, you must provide a copy of official college transcripts from all colleges and universities you have attended and an official report of your score on the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) through the Credential

Assembly Service (CAS), for which you should register when you register for the LSAT. You can register for the LSAT and the Credential Assembly Service (CAS) online at: Please submit a minimum of two letters of recommendation.

Your letters should be submitted through the Credential Assembly Service, which is described in the LSAT/ Credential Assembly Service registration information. Letters should be from members of the faculty of your undergraduate or graduate school, preferably faculty members who served as your advisers on research projects or who taught you in more than one course. Letters from employers are also welcome, preferably from persons who have been your supervisors in full-time employment or military service.

CHARACTER AND FITNESS STANDARDS OF THE LEGAL PROFESSION In addition to a bar examination, there are character, fitness, and other qualifications for admission to the bar in every U.S. jurisdiction. Applicants are encouraged to determine the requirements for any jurisdiction in which they intend to seek admission by contacting the jurisdiction. Addresses for all relevant agencies are available through the National Conference of Bar Examiners. With an eye toward these professional standards, the Vanderbilt application for admission asks specific questions concerning disciplinary actions in an academic setting as well as criminal charges or convictions. Bar examiners may review your answers to these questions on your law school application when you apply for admission to the bar and your background records are checked. INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS ONLY International students who completed a bachelor’s degree at an institution outside the United States (including its territories) and/or Canada must: (1) register with the LSAC J.D. Credential Assembly Service, and (2) if the language of instruction at the foreign institution conferring your bachelor’s is not English, take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), and have ETS send your score directly to LSAC for inclusion with your Credential Assembly Service report using code 0058.

Questions? Please contact the Office of Admissions at 615-322-6452 or email us at if you have questions. We look forward to working with you during the admission process.


J.D. Application Checklist

PRIOR TO SUBMITTING YOUR APPLICATION: Register for the LSAT/Credential Assembly Service online at International students must also register with the J.D. Credential Assembly Service and have their TOEFL results reported to LSAC using code 0058. Send official copies of all college and university transcripts to the Credential Assembly Service (CAS). Have two letters of recommendation sent to Credential Assembly Service (CAS) or give the J.D. Applicant Recommendation Forms to recommenders.

By January 10: Complete and submit the Application for Law Scholars Merit Awards (optional). All admitted applicants will be automatically considered for other merit scholarships, but only those who submit this application are considered for Law Scholar Merit Awards (see page 71). By February 15: Complete the CSS PROFILE and FAFSA form to be considered for need-based scholarships (optional). September 15 to April 1: Complete and submit the J.D. Application with your personal statement.

By December 1: Request admission interview (strongly encouraged, see page 69).


For more information Contact: Assistant Dean and Dean of Admissions G. Todd Morton Associate Department Director, Admissions N. Richelle Acker Associate Director of Admissions and Director of LL.M. Program Cynthia M. Coleman

Vanderbilt Law School 131 21st Avenue South Nashville Tennessee 37203 (615) 322-6452 (615) 322-1531 fax

Associate Director, Admissions and Recruitment N. Ryan Willard

Hours: Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Central Time (except holidays) Location: Beasley Admissions Suite

Associate Director, Admissions, Recruitment and International Student Services Kelly Bahiraei


Associate Director, Admission Interview Program Caroline Sirko

Program Assistant Sandy Weinstein Education Coordinator Dorothy Bathon Education Coordinator Tina McAnally

SECURITY STATEMENT In compliance with the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act and the Tennessee College and University Security Information Act, Vanderbilt University will provide you, upon request, an annual Security Report on University-wide security and safety, including related policies, procedures, and crime statistics. A copy of this report may be obtained by writing or calling the Vanderbilt University Police and Security Office, 2800 Vanderbilt Place, Nashville, Tennessee 37212 or by telephone at (615) 343-9750. You may also obtain this report on our website at NONDISCRIMINATION STATEMENT In compliance with federal law, including the provisions of Title IX of the Education Amendment of 1972, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1965, Sections 503 and 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, Vanderbilt University does not discriminate on the basis of race, sex, religion, color, national or ethnic origin, age, disability, or military service in its administration of educational policies, programs, or activities; its admissions policies; scholarship and loan programs; athletic or other Universityadministered programs; or employment. In addition, the University does not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression, consistent with the University’s nondiscrimination policy. Inquiries or complaints should be directed to the Opportunity Development Officer, Baker Building, VU Station B #351809, 2301 Vanderbilt Place, Nashville, Tennessee 37235-1809. (615) 322-4705 (V/TDD): fax (615) 343-4969.


Getting to Vanderbilt Law School via the Interstates

The Law School Admissions Office is located in the Beasley Admissions Suite on the first floor of the Law School building.

From the north, take I-65 to I-40 east to exit 209B. Turn right on Broadway (U.S. 70S).

Once you have turned onto Broadway, stay on the right. When Broadway splits into West End Avenue, follow West End to 21st Avenue South. Turn left onto 21st (a one-way street). Pay parking is available near the law school in Terrace Park Garage or in Wesley Place Garage.

From the east or south, take I-40 west to exit 209A. Turn left on Broadway (U.S. 70S). From the west, take I-40 east to exit 209B. Turn right on Broadway (U.S. 70S).













Divinity School SCARRITT PLACE




Marriott Hotel


25 25 king e r Pa arag G


Stadium Club







Vaughn Home

Bryan Building Branscomb Quadrangle






General Library

Greenhouse Math NMR Jacobs Hall Stevenson Center


Frist Hall Godchaux Nursing Annex

MRB III Learned Lab Bio/Sci

Schulman Center for Jewish Life


28 th AV UE SO UT H

Baseball Stadium



University Club




McGugin Center 25th Avenue Staff Parking Garage


Langford Auditorium

Light Hall

Medical Center East North Tower

Vanderbilt University Hospital

V.A. Medical Center

V.A. Medical Center

The Vanderbilt Clinic

Preston Research

2 2 n d AV E N U E S O U T H

Robinson Research

East Parking Garage Oxford House

Outdoor Running Track


Jesup Psych.

Hill Student Center

Hobbs Human Dev. Lab




Hank Ingram


Wyatt Center



Stambaugh Murray




Page-Campbell Heart Institute South Garage

Student Recreation Center




Ingram Cancer Center

Seigenthaler Center




Central Garage

Carell Children's Hospital

Dayani Center

Village At Vanderbilt

Village At Vanderbilt Apartments

Village At Vanderbilt Townhouses



Psychiatric Hospital at Vanderbilt

Stallworth Rehab Hospital


1 9 t h AV E N U E S O U T H


Blair School of Music


Home Econ.


Medical Center East South Tower


Currey Tennis



Infant Care

Kennedy Center

Medical Center North

Eskind Library

Olin Hall

2 4 t h AV E N U E S O U T H



Zerfoss Health Center


Studio Arts








University School


Student Life Center

Baseball Bleachers

Football Stadium

Wesley Place Garage

Medical Arts

Memorial Gym

Holiday Inn Select

1 9 t h AV E N U E S O U T H


Power House

Godchaux Hall


2 1 s t AV E N U E S O U T H






Cole Sarratt Rand Hall



ASAP & West End Women’s Health



Old Central









Owen Graduation School of Management





es 5W




1 8 t h AV E N U E S O U T H





n tE


2 0 t h AV E N U E S O U T H





Centennial Park Vanderbilt Bookstore

Vanderbilt Law School


Neely Auditorium



1 9 t h AV E N U E S O U T H













es lW



i rm


Career Services

Vanderbilt University Law School

Kirkland Hall Calhoun











e ha


Law Student Surface Parking Vanderbilt/ Barnard

The Hilton Garden Inn/ Vanderbilt

Center Building





Vanderbilt University Student Financial Aid Office Alumni Hall McGill









College Halls at Kissam


Law Student and Visitor Covered Parking


Embassy Suites























Baker Building




Terrace Place Garage












Hampton Inn Vanderbilt


Loews Vanderbilt Plaza Hotel



Vanderbilt Law School | 131 21st Avenue South Nashville Tennessee 37203 (615) 322-6452 | (615) 322-1531 fax

2018 Vanderbilt Law School Viewbook  
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